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UK Crypto Advisory Firm Shuts Down Over Investor Losses, Accounting Neglect

Shalini Nagarajan
Last updated: | 2 min read
Crypto advisory

The UK government’s Insolvency Service has shut down a London-based crypto advisory firm that claimed to offer investment advice in cryptocurrencies.

In a London High Court ruling on April 30, Amey Finance Academy Ltd was ordered to close. The company’s sole owner and leader, Desmond Amey (42), who presented himself as a wealth creation specialist, had previously assured customers that their cryptocurrency investments were safe.

Despite Amey’s assurances, customers allegedly lost money in their investments, according to a statement on Monday. This lack of positive returns raised red flags. And in July 2022, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) stepped in.

The financial watchdog identified Amey Finance Academy as an unauthorized provider of financial services or products in the UK, warning against dealing with it.

The firm’s founder Amey didn’t return Cryptonews’ request for comment by press time.

Crypto Advisory Firm Allegedly Made False Promises

Established in Dec. 2018, Amey Finance Academy advertised itself on social media as “an established and successful independent consultancy providing a plethora of financial services.” The company also claimed to operate a leading education academy within the industry, the Insolvency Service said.

However, Amey made false assurances, guaranteeing one customer who later lost all their invested funds that their investment would not fall below 90%.

In WhatsApp messages investigators reviewed, Amey assured another customer that the investments were “100 certy” and urged them to “trust me bro.” Additionally, Amey Finance Academy promoted crypto schemes conducted by other firms such as HyperFund, which raised over $1.7b from investors globally.

Chief Investigator Exposes Founder’s Deceptive Crypto Schemes

Further, Amey posted a video on YouTube in Oct. 2023, suggesting that the office still maintained a presence at 1 Canada Square in Canary Wharf, London. However, he had actually been evicted earlier that year in January due to rent non-payment.

“Desmond Amey used Amey Finance Academy to recklessly persuade individuals to invest in cryptocurrency schemes and mislead them about the risks of doing so,” said Mark George, the Insolvency Service’s chief investigator.

He also mentioned that the service couldn’t determine the company’s full activities, assets, liabilities. Nor could it ascertain the handling of £5m ($6.2m) from Oct. 2019 to March 2022 due to insufficient accounting records and lack of transparency.

“The public deserve protection from companies trading in an opaque and objectionable manner which is why we applied to have Amey Finance Academy shut down,” George said.

Earlier this year, the UK’s National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) took down 43 websites suspected of crypto phishing scams. The NFIB’s investigation uncovered a fake email address designed to trick customers. This spoofed address aimed to exploit security weaknesses and steal cryptocurrency.